Thursday, 14 April 2011

It’s not the markets for your products …..

At a recent ‘marketing’ (?) presentation I heard the presenter state that ‘marketing is all about finding people to buy the products and services that you make.’

In my opinion this is totally incorrect!

What he was describing was a ‘sales orientation’ and not a definition of marketing. Though the sales function, in its many forms, is a very important part of the process, it simply focuses on ‘Place’,  just one of the 7 P’s of the marketing mix.

It should not be the driver of a company’s orientation and approach.

Marketers and marketing see the world the other way around. I believe that marketing is about finding out what products and services customers want – and then making and delivering those in ways that create value for both parties – Using the sales  force as one of the possible routes to market.

Other sales methods include the Internet, dealers, retail outlets, franchises, business partners and so on. This combination forms the basis of a channel strategy.

There are several definitions of marketing – but they all address the basic question: ‘What is it that the company does better and differently to its competitors, in ways that add value to and are valued by its customers, that can’t be easily copied.

Customers are at the heart of the world view for marketers and not products!
This is a very good definition of the marketing concept of ‘Sustainable Competitive Advantage’ (SCA) the fundamental outcome of marketing orientation, where the customers’ wants and needs are placed at the centre of everything that the organisation is and does.

All of the main marketing processes; Mission, Marketplace Assessment, Objective Setting, Strategy and Tactics should be synchronised and developed with this outcome in mind.

It’s not the markets for your products that are important – It’s the products for your markets!

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